in blue states like california, new york, and illinois. and could see gains in maryland and florida. so why do these house races matter? members of congress will have to make big decisions in the coming months. chief among them, reaching a deal to avoid the so-called fiscal cliff, a series of tax increases and spending cuts set to take effect next year. >> the decisions confronting congress over the next four months are bigger than i think most of us have seen in our lifetime. at least on the fiscal matters. >> reporter: it's not just the fiscal cliff. >> most people think we need some fundamental tax reform, some cuts in spending and entitlement reform.